I just finished reading Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins and it was just as much fun as her previous novel, Anna and the French Kiss. One of the fun things about Lola is the reappearance of Anna and St. Claire from Anna. While they are not key characters in this novel, they aren't bit players, either. It's fun to be updated on their lives.
As with Anna, this book is YA, but with a perhaps more realistic view of the life of a seventeen-year-old girl. Lola is dating an older, bad boy-type while also struggling with her feelings for the nice guy- type boy next door. As my husband says, it is very frustrating to be the nice guy because the girls always think they want the bad boy. Some of that frustration is illustrated here. Why do we girls always seem to have such a fascination with the bad boy? We can fix him? He will want to change just for us? He's a bad boy with a heart of gold? Such fantasies!
This was just the kind of fun, fluffy book I was looking for this week. I really enjoyed it, but just a heads up for you more conservative readers: Lola has two dads, a former addict for a birth mom, and she is no longer a virgin. These situations are all handled rather matter-of-factly and without specific or suggestive details. If any of that bothers you, you might prefer to read it yourself before passing it on to your teenage daughter. Personally I am looking forward to Perkins' next book, Isla and the Happily Ever After, set to be released Fall 2012.